Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Presentation and mobile devices

At the beginning of a presentation, the presenter asks for all devices to be either muzzled or turned off. Within minutes, you start hearing the devices notify the various users that they have messages. Why can't people do as they are asked. I think part of the reason for people not turning devices to vibrate is because they feel that their email is more important and bothering people isn't something they care about.

Another thing people do is put their device on the table and let it vibrate, but of course that disrupts other attendees. If you put your device on vibrate, put it in the holster or a pocket and that way it will contact you but not disrupt those around you. It is interesting to hear the different sounds that people have for their settings.

Of course, I am at an all day conference, and it is fun to see what people do at breaks. Besides the basic personal needs, everyone checks their email and voice mail. A 20-minute break seems to disappear very quickly when you do this. Of course, at sponsored events, the 20 minutes is supposed to be used to talk to the sponsoring vendors. Nowadays, to take time away from the office means you still need to contact the office at breaks and at lunch. Even for consultants, the breaks are used for talking with clients.

Agendas are very important for attendees. I am at an event where the agenda was not talked about at the beginning of the day. The agenda is available online, but not visible for those attending without an internet connection. I, for one, decided that I would print the agenda before coming to the event and am glad I did. The agenda does help know when you are going to be able to contact that person who contacted you during the presentation.

It is very important to go to the various conferences and seminars as it does keep you update on what is happening in IT. Most people have a focus, but it is a good idea to attend some seminars outside your focus so that you know what is happening in general. Having a focus is great but remember if you don't think outside your focus, you may lose your focus and have nothing to fall back on.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Computers at presentations

There seems to be more and more computers going to presentations and various meetings. I understand that people use their computer to take notes, but what is frustrating are the individuals that seem to do everything else while at the meeting.

I go to a monthly meeting, and it seems that people do a lot of other things on their computer while attending that meeting. What these people don't understand is that they are distracting to the people around them because of the constant flipping between screens. If you are going to put the time and effort to go to an evening presentation, please respect other people's time as well. A lot of us are trying to pay attention to the presentation, but it is hard when screens are flipping in front of us.

I understand that there are times when you quickly have to move to something else because a thought has come to you, but it is the constant flipping between various applications such as Facebook, Twitter, and all the other applications people go to. Last month I noticed one guy that seems to spend his entire session working on various applications on his computer. It got so bad that I could tell you he was checking stock prices, and he was sitting a few rows ahead of us.

Computers are a valuable means of taking notes, but they should be used for taking the notes and not as a distraction to those around you. When at a presentation, remember, you aren't the only one that is seeing your computer screen unless you have a privacy screen on it. For me what I do when taking my notes at a session is at the bottom of the page, I have the other thoughts that have come to me during the session and then will put them in the appropriate spot after the meeting.

So next time you go to a presentation and want to take notes, please remember that the flipping of screens is distracting to others around you. Please keep your flipping to a minimum, and it will make a lot of other people happy.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Saying goodbye again

This past June, I had to say goodbye to yet another person that was very special in my life. It is so hard even when you know the end is coming, but in this case, it did come too quickly.

The women I am talking about was a business owner, designer, and a wonderful friend to a lot of people. With her, you knew if she liked you or not and where you stood. I know that I liked her a lot, and she was someone I could talk to about a lot of different things that I couldn't talk to some family members about. She also inspired me to try and do some designing, but also to be a stronger person.

It is hard for me to think about going into the store and not seeing her again there, especially when I need to talk to her about something. I am determined to make her proud of me no matter what because I know she is watching over me.

Saying goodbye is only saying goodbye to the physical person and not the person that will always live in my heart. I am a stronger person for having her in my life, and proud to be able to say she was a friend.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Back to routine

It is amazing how one simple date on the calendar can make such a big impact on so many people’s lives.  The date I am talking about it when school starts again after kids have been off for two months.

I don’t have children that are going back to school, but of course my schedule is also impacted.  Bus route times change, and even how many people are on the buses and subway really changes.  For people with children going to school, there are so many different things to think about, such as what time to get the kids up in the morning to if all the homework is completed each evening.

What amazes me about the date on the calendar is just how many people one day can effect, even when they don’t have children to consider.  Now we all have to consider the children out on the street going and coming home from school, as well as all the school buses that are now on the road again.

Yes, the day after Labour Day is a sign of change for so many of us.  The weather may be getting cooler, and the days are getting shorter, but more importantly, we deal with more people on the roads for the next 10 months.

Our routine is impacted by others so easily, and sometimes we don’t even think about that change until it happens.  So, remember, beware of the extra people on the roads as it will impact your timing each day.